Seahorse fry are the most amazing critters I've ever seen.
They are exact replica's of the parents, born fully functioning, and so
much tinier then you think they will be. The largest fry are less
than 1/2 inch. Depending on species, most are under 1/4 inch.
Smaller then an amphipod, not much bigger then a piece of gravel (see
fry photos) but so cute.
Fry are either non-hitching (generally called pelagic) or hitching at birth
(referred to as benthic) depending on the species.
Non-hitching fry generally begin to hitch between 5 days and 6 weeks of
age depending on species.
We are struggling seahorse breeders. Our first success was with
a brood of H. comes (Tiger Tails) which are
We started out with 75 fry adopted on the day they were born and we
raised 4 of them to one year old. This is success. Any fry survival is
success. We have learned so much and I believe better success
rates are very possible, but one must always be prepared to loose many
of their fry and to focus on the successes rather than dwell on the
failures. A history of our early experience is found in
my Diaries. We are currently (May
2006) raising reidi fry - the oldest having been born on 2/22/06.
I hope to add these experiences to this site in the near future. (You
can laugh if you're still reading that statement in 2007).
Like many things, there is more than one way to be successful.
There are several methods that have worked very well. As always, I
suggest research. What you read here are my own theories and experience.
There is no substitute for getting as much information as
possible from as many successful breeders as possible - the discussions
and archived discussions at Seahorse.org and Syngnathid.org have a
wealth of information.
When raising fry there are several critical considerations.
Physical safety of fry, water quality, and nutrition. All of these issues are best handled
in nurseries. It is virtually impossible to raise fry in a community
tank - I am unaware of any success.
The following links take to you pages containing details of
important subjects for raising fry: